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20130221
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for one day a week.or according to the pentagon'srd chief budget officer robert hale, that would save between $4en billion and $5 billion, but itll would all come out of people's paychecks. any >> if we feel we don't have any choice but to impose furloughs even though we would much prefer not to do it. of frankly, this is within of the least-- or the most distasteful tasks i have faced in my four years in this job. >> reporter: department of defense civilians run training ranges where navy pilots practice strafing runs. they manage the flow of supplies to troops in afghanistan o overhaul army tanks and providen, medical care for everybody fromre for e wounded warriors to retirees. to laying them off for one day a laying week would not cripple national defense, but it would, said jessica wright, the pentagon'st head of personnel, be an economic catastrophe for their families. >> if furloughs are enacted, civilians will experience a 20% decrease in their pay between late april and september. >> reporter: even then, the pentagon would still have to t find another $41 billion in savings d
late april and september. >> reporter: robert hale the chief's pentagon budget officer says the furlough will save the government $4 billion to $5 billion, but president obama says the cuts should be made elsewhere. >> there's no reason they should be furloughed or laid off. >> president obama is trying to pin the blame for the last-minute budget crisis on congress and with both chambers on recess this week he has the stage here in washington all to himself. >> i'm hoping while they're back home, they're hearing it from their constituents so when they get back here, they're ready to do some work and we can avoid these automatic spending cuts. >> but congressmen back home may not be getting the earful the president's hoping for. while nearly half of the americans want to avoid it less than 40% want to let it happen and some of capitol hill agree with the 40%. >> not only should the sequester stand. many pundits say the sequester falls short. >> if the cuts kick in, that same poll shows more people would blame republicans in congress than the president.
say that means as many as 700,000 of the 800,000 civilians who work for the pentagon. >> this is not a beltway phenomenon. on our civilians it will be catastrophic. >> reporter: civilians like sue ann fallenberg a single mom and administrative assistant at a naval school 3,000 miles away from washington in monterey california. >> i would have to get a part-time job to support my family. >> reporter: she is worryied about the 20% pay cut if she's furloughed or put on involuntary pay one day a week. >> can you reduce the rent for 20%? i can't say that. >> reporter: and it's not just cuts to the pentagon dozens of agencies including the fbi will also have to make difficult choices. >> the fbi would be in the position of having to evaluate where those reductions can come from, and that may impact in the national security arena. >> reporter: the president will continue in coming days to highlight the hardships to individuals and to the public at large if the cuts take place. democrats congressional campaign committee also goes on the offensive today.
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